Pope Francis set for synod on challenges facing the Amazon

Pope Francis planted an oak tree in the Vatican gardens with members of Brazil's Amazonian indigenous people.

It comes two days ahead of a three-week meeting called by Pope Francis on the Amazon at the Vatican.

He has summoned bishops, laypeople and indigenous groups to join him in discussing the environmental and sacramental challenges facing the region.

Bishops from Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Suriname and Venezuela will be taking part in the Amazon synod.